Code Louisville expanded to Fill 1,700 Local Tech Job Openings

From Metro Government….

LOUISVILLE KY —  The innovative Code Louisville tech-training program, a focus of President Obama’s visit to Louisville Thursday, is being expanded to help even more people get training for higher-paying technology jobs, Mayor Greg Fischer announced today.

Fischer said the Learning House, a cloud based technology learning platform company headquartered in Louisville, has committed to bring an intensive coding “bootcamp” to Louisville later this year. The bootcamp will meet a growing demand from people who want full-time, concentrated IT skill development. The bootcamp will be based on the successful model enacted at Concordia University in Saint Paul, Minnesota and will help students turn hands-on skills into college credit.

The second new partnership is with Jefferson Community & Technical College, which will provide Code Louisville graduates with credit equivalency for their portfolios, leading directly to certificates or degrees. Many tech jobs are available to people with more advanced skills but lacking a degree, but others do require a degree. This will help them advance on a path to a degree.

“The addition of boot camp sessions and the ability for people to turn hands-on skills into college credit will greatly expand the reach and effectiveness of this critical effort and help us become a full-spectrum, model city for tech training,” Fischer said.

“Jefferson Community and Technical College is pleased to partner with CodeLouisville/Treehouse to meet critical workforce needs in information technology, said JCTC president Tony Newberry. “This partnership is expected to open new educational pathways for current JCTC and Code Louisville students.”

“Learning House is thrilled to be the city of Louisville’s bootcamp provider of choice to help students gain market relevant IT skills and provide regional employers with the technology talent they desperately need,” said Todd Zipper, President and CEO of Learning House.  “We’re hopeful that the work we do here in Louisville, bolstered by President Obama’s TechHire initiative, can serve as a national model for success when it comes to high-tech worker training and meeting the demands of the 21st-century economy.”

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 8.01.07 AMCode Louisville started in 2013 and based on its initial success, last year was awarded a federal Workforce Innovation Fund Grant by the Department of Labor to expand Code Louisville training to 12 counties surrounding Louisville. The grant also helps graduates of the course find jobs with area technology companies. Since 2014 more than 160 people, ranging in age from 18 to 64, have started Code Louisville sessions. Twenty of the students are now in software developer jobs as a result.

Code Louisville courses last 12 weeks and cover skills such as front and back-end Web development, and development of software and applications for mobile devices. Students work independently on their own schedule and meet one day a week in the evenings for two hours to review their work, get “unstuck” and learn from experienced mentors in the tech community. At the end of each course, students have compiled a portfolio of work to show prospective employers at a job fair or interview or to translate into college credit.

People interested in learning more about Code Louisville or enrolling in the next class can go

Earlier this year, Code Louisville expanded to reach a new audience – high school students from disadvantaged neighborhoods. Though the Coding at the Beech program, students meet at the Beecher Terrace housing project in West Louisville twice a week to learn coding and work with an adult mentor from the local IT community. Plans are to develop a small nonprofit social venture to employ these students and help neighborhood and community businesses establish and maintain a Web presence, allowing the students to begin earning money for the web development skills they are building. Also, each student who completes the program will receive a Chromebook computer to further their coding work.

By 2020, there will be one million more computer programming jobs in the U.S. than workers to fill them, and 10,400 of those jobs will be in the Louisville Metro area – the 12-county training region.

Currently, the area has more than 1,700 technology job openings. Salaries start at $45,000-$60,000 with no degree necessary. Code Louisville was created to close the skills gap and prepare people for these high-paying tech jobs.“As President Obama recognized in his visit yesterday, Louisville is leading the nation to solve the high tech skills gap,” Fischer said. “Today’s new partnerships will make us an even better model for other communities, and, more importantly, help give Louisvillians the skills they need to have successful, fulfilling careers.”